I was thinking earlier last evening as I lit a fire in the fireplace and watched the flames expand through the dry wood of my savings that the Oaks, Maples, and Ash burn beautifully. The few logs of pulp wood that I have cut down burn like damp leaves.
It’s been a late November cold where I live and tomorrow begins December. I border the Shawangunks and Catskill mountain ranges and I’m nestled in a valley a little higher than the Hudson valley so my area gets an up-slope frost and a biting chill when Canada sends us a north wind clipper.
And so I lite a fire. Fireplace fires always remind me of life. The flames are the youth of being, the coals are brightness and heat of middle age and the embers are the waning lights of age and memory.
Simplistic, of course, but an encouragement that wherever you see the light, in youth, middle age or in old age, there is joy and the still small spark of creation. I love it.
If you look at the wood before you put it into the chewing cauldron of fire, you have a log of light and form from many years of growth. Stored in the cellulous fibers are the heat of the sun, the substances of form from soil nutrients and the nourishment of water. A gift of nature to humankind for use as sustenance, structure and stored heat.
As I write this post my fire is nearly out. A few sparks glow deep within the covering ash. Age is a lot like that. It’s not sad. It’s a reality check to create while you can before your thoughts a hundred years from now are no more than the dissipating smoke of a memory.